(Chicago, IL) – February 20, 2012. Attorney General Lisa Madigan and Boone County State’s Attorney Michelle Courier on Friday announced a settlement with crystal manufacturer NDK Crystal Co., fining the company $39,000 and shuttering the plant until the facility is certified by state regulators as safe for operation following the 2009 explosion at the facility that killed a motoristnear Belvidere.
In the Dec. 7, 2009 explosion, quartz particles and other debris blew across Interstate 90 and killed a truck driver who was struck by the flying debris at a nearby tollway oasis.
Under terms of the settlement, NDK, a Japan-based company, cannot resume operations until the Illinois Office of State Fire Marshal inspects and certifies all machinery used at the site for manufacturing synthetic crystals.
In addition to the $39,000 civil penalty, NDK must pay a $5,000 in reimbursement to both Boone County and Illinois Hazardous Waste Fund.
“This plan puts public safety at the forefront, with rigorous protections in place to ensure this facility is in proper working order before it goes back online,” Madigan said.
“The explosion in 2009 led to the death of an innocent bystander and the release of crystalline material,” said Courier. “We needed to take the necessary actions to protect the public.”